This is an abstract colored pencil drawing I did yesterday. It’s done on Canson Mi Tientes Touch heavy duty pastel board. It has a toothy, rough surface that holds many layers of pastel or pencil.
When I do an abstract, I start with a basic idea. However, I let the artwork unfold and I let my idea evolve. This makes it more fun, and more of an adventure. When I first started drawing and painting, I was very rigid, and mainly wanted my art to look like the objects I was representing. That’s probably because I was learning the skills of how to render real life objects. Doing abstract work is freeing, and more relaxing for me. I can express a concept, or a feeling, not just physical objects. It’s also fun to play with color, lines, shapes, values, and so on. I love doing geometric forms.
Two things happened with this, that I had not planned. First, the fact that my lines are closer together and less diagonal in the background gives this piece a feeling of one point perspective. Second, I like the striations of light and dark violets in the upper 1/5 of the piece. It reminds me of a sunset with a couple of cloud banks down by the horizon. The green areas remind me of a rural landscape. The yellow/gold/orange in the middle reminds me of the path life takes us on.
I really love this Art Spectrum Colourfix Paper. For one thing, look at the rich, colorful violet blue background. Using colored pencils on this is so smooth and buttery.
I was inspired by an image I saw in church of a cross with spots of light, like stars. The “stars” were soft and dim, bright and clear, or in between. That made me want to do something similar. I went with a variation of a split complement color scheme. Blue and orange are opposites on the color wheel. Red and yellow are close to orange. So, I used lots of variations of red, pink, orange, yellow, and cream to make these various balls. I love how the blue shows through on some of them between the circular lines, so I left them that way.
I got the idea to put shadow tails on some of them (like a comet’s tail) because the drawing looked flat, and just reminded me of a fabric print. I think this really helped add a sense of mystery, and made for a much stronger value system, which is the system of lights and darks. I used indigo blue for the shadows. I like the the shadows form a veil over some of the other orbs, and create a greater sense of being three dimensional.
Here is another abstract I did today. I did this in colored pencil (mostly Prismacolor) and Prismacolor Art Stix on Strathmore gray scale paper. I started by drawing wavy lines and boxes within with charcoal. Then I did the rest with the art sticks and colored pencils. The nice thing about Prismacolor, is they have a nice system of grays. There is cool gray, warm gray, and french gray in various values. I decided to make most of the squares in various shades of gray, black, and white. Only a few of the boxes have color in them. In my experience, life is mostly mundane, punctuated with occasional times of joy and excitement. However, the mundane grays make the good times all the more happy by comparison. Here, the grays really show off the bright colors.